Black Wolves Topped By Bandits

UNCASVILLE, Conn. – The New England dropped their 12th game of the season falling to Buffalo 20-9 Sunday night at Mohegan Sun Arena.

Garrett Billings had a season high five assists, leading New England (4-12) with five points. Kyle Buchanan had a goal and two assists while Jimmy Purves tallied a career-high two goals. Kevin Buchanan, Mark Cockerton and Josh Johnson each had a goal and two assists.

Mark Steenhuis had a game high 11 points with five goals and six assists for the Bandits (10-7). Ryan Benesch had four goals and four assists while Alexander Kedoh Hill and Dhane Smith each tallied seven points with Hill scoring three goals and four assists and Smith having two goals and five assists.

It was a close game through the first quarter as Buffalo took a quick 2-0 lead just 2:55 into the game on goals by Smith and Mitch Jones. Johnson put New England on the board just over three minutes into the game making the score 2-1.  The Black Wolves and Bandits each traded goals through the rest of the quarter starting with a power play goal from Benesch. Kyle Buchanan would answer at the 4:48 mark. Three more goals by Buffalo and two more by New England made the first quarter score 6-4.

At the start of the second quarter, the Black Wolves cut the lead to one as Purves took a pass from Mike Diehl making the score 6-5. Jones pushed the lead to two for the Bandits again but was quickly followed by another New England goal cutting Buffalo’s lead to one. The Bandits took control of the game from that point on as they scored five of the final seven goals of the quarter taking a 12-8 lead into the half. Nick Weiss had to goals over this stretch while Steenhuis had a goal and an assist. Bucktooth and Kyle Buchanan scored the final two goals of the half for the Black Wolves.

It was all Buffalo in the second half as they outscored the Black Wolves 8-1. Steenhuis had three goals and two assists during this run while had two goals and two assists. Mike McNamara scored the final goal of the game for New England, which was his first career National Lacrosse League goal.

Evan Kirk made 25 saves and allowed 16 goals while Tye Belanger played 11:30 minutes making eight saves and allowing four goals. Kirk took the loss. Anthony Cosmo made 39 saves on 48 shots faced allowing eight goals for the Bandits.

New England returns to action on Friday May 1st when they host the Toronto Rock for the final home game of the year. Game time is 7:00 pm.